How to Identify and Learn from Your Mistakes
We see mistakes and failure as shameful things. And we usually identify with them:
If I fail a test, then I am a failure. If I make a mistake then I am a mistake.
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You can only learn from a mistake after you admit you've made it.
Don't start blaming other people (or the universe) for the things that go wrong, because you distance yourself from any possible lesson.
It requires three things:
When you can laugh at your own mistakes you know you've accepted it and no longer judge yourself on the basis of one single event.
Humor loosens up your psychology and prevents you from obsessing about the past.
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... to recover from a mistake with humor:
Many people think a good essay is persuasive. But more importantly, an essay should be useful.
There are four parts to a good essay:
An essay should be correct. However, to be correct is not enough if it is vague.
Don't publish anything unless you're sure it's worth hearing. Write the first draft of an essay quickly, trying out all sorts of ideas. Then rewrite it very carefully, being sure to sift out anything that you're not sure of, or that is not true. Useful writing makes claims that are as strong as they can be without overstating it.
Strength comes from two things: thinking well, and the skillful use of qualification.
Qualifications can express many things: how broadly something applies, how you know it, how happy you are it's so, even how it could be falsified. As you try to refine the expression of an idea, adjust the qualification accordingly. The more you refine an idea, the less you'll need to qualify it. However, don't underestimate qualification. Learn to use its full range.
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